Chinese officials who meddle in judicial cases could now find their names in a newly created blacklist by the central authorities.
China rolled out measures on Monday to record all officials who interfere in judicial cases and name violators publicly to hold them accountable in the latest effort to ensure judicial independence and transparency.
According to new rules issued by the General Office of the Central Committee of the Communist Party of China (CPC) and the General Office of the State Council, judicial personnel should keep the whole process faithfully recorded no matter who is involved.
Violations identified include interceding for the litigants, asking personnel handling cases to meet with the litigants or their defenders privately, or overstepping their authority to make tendentious suggestions or directions on handling of cases by means of hearing reports, holding coordination meetings or issuing circular.
Officials who retaliate against judicial personnel involved in the recording or whose interference creates further problems or influences a case shall be given disciplinary penalties and even criminal penalties if their behaviors constitute crimes, according to the rules.
Judicial personnel who fail to record the interference shall receive disciplinary punishment.
The rules are a part of a broader legal reform package adopted by a key session of the CPC Central Committee in October to advance the rule of law in an all-round way.
The rules are deemed pertinent to steering Party and government officials clear of judicial investigations and trials as officials around the country have been criticized for meddling in cases which greatly impair judicial credibility.